The US wood products sector is expected to take soft recovery. That is what economist Bill Conerly says. The reason is a slight construction rebound.
The rebound has to come because the recent level of construction has been unsustainably low. US-population is growing, but not as fast as when the US attracted lots of foreign immigrants. The increased population triggers a demand for homes, stores, offices and other places to work, Conerly says.
The level of housing starts will not reach by far that one of before 2005 when two million new housing units were built. But it will be a lot more than the 612,000 of 2011. Further softening the rebound is the steady decline in average square footage of new housing since 2007, down about five percent for single family houses and ten percent for multi-family.
Attitudes have also changed. People now more think of a house as a place to live. Young couples are not speeding to home ownership as fast as they can, preferring to rent for a while.
All things considered, construction and wood products demand will improve slightly over the next two years, Conerly resumes.